Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Azarenka, Williams and Kvitova get wins the first day in Istanbul

The WTA Champions got off to a a bit of a strange start today when White Group members Victoria Azarenka and Sara Errani played the very first match of the event. But didn't you think this match might be a mess? Azarenka was all out of sorts, especially with her serve, and Errani gave her all she could handle from the baseline, gaining a 5-2 lead in the first set. But then Azarenka turned on the switch and took the set to a tiebreak, which she won. The set lasted just under an hour and a half.

At this point, the Italian appeared to unravel somewhat, but whatever emotions she was feeling were just part of her problem. She injured her calf in the second set and had difficulty moving. Azarenka won that set (6-2), also.

In the Red Group, Serena Williams needed only an hour and four minutes to beat Angelique Kerber 6-2, 6-1. Williams was spot-on in every aspect of her game, which included 100% success at the net.

In the final match, Red Group members Petra Kvitova and Agnieszka Radwanska faced off, and Radwanska did that one-down thing she always does when she plays a hard hitter. The Polish star could actually do a lot better than she does against the likes of Kvitova, Williams, etc., but apparently, the very sight of them on the other side of the net deflates her, and she gives up control of the rallies. She's just not the same player. Kvitova beat her 6-4, 6-4. That's right--straight sets.

Tomorrow's schedule:

Li Na vs. Sara Errani (White Group)
Victoria Azarenka vs. Jelena Jankovic (Whaite Group)
Serena Williams vs. Agnieszka Radwanska (Red Group)

Also, the eight players who are to compete in the Tournament of Champions in Sofia have been announced:

Simona Halep
Maria Kirilenko
Elena Vesnina
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
Alize Cornet
Ana Ivanovic (wild card)
Tsvetana Pironkova (wild card)


Anonymous said...

Would like to hear your thougths about what's happening with russian Fedcup team.

Diane said...

It really does seem to be a combination of factors. Makarova and Sharapova are injured. Kirilenko, Pavlyuchenkova and Vesnina chose Sofia points over FC.

Scheduling Sofia and FC at the same time is beyond riciculous. This has happened before, but not so dramatically.

It doesn't help that there seems to be no love lost between some of the players and the Russian Federation. I don't know if you heard Gavrilova "turn down" an offer to play before she was even asked.

There have been rumblings about the RF for some time. If the accusations of lack of support, etc. are true, I'd like to see the Russian FC team go all Spanish on them :)

sunny nine said...

I was surprised regarding the Fed Cup situation also, but figured that there must be trouble w their Federation. The women who chose Sofia have been staunch supporters of playing for Russia in the past. So I feel that something must have happened in order for these Russian women to choose not to play.
With regard to Sofia-I still do not like the wildcard situation. I am not sure why it was instituted. All 8 entrants should earn their way into the tournament.

Eric said...

@sunny nine: totally agree with you with regards to the wildcard situation. i guess i can rationalize pironkova since she's their local talent...but i still think that if they want to put a "popular" player in like ana ivanovic, they should just make it a fan selection spot.